Fall fish surveys in 2013 indicate that crappie fishing will be descent in 2014. Anglers can expect approximately 12 – 15 percent of the white crappie they catch will be over 9". Many of the legal fish will be in the 9" - 11" range, but sampling has shown there is also a good number of white crappie over 13". A majority of the black crappie in the lake will be in the 5" - 8" range. In the spring, anglers should target crappie in shallow areas around brush piles or on shallow flats. In the fall and winter crappie will be found cruising large flats adjacent to the old St. Francis River channel. Largemouth bass angling should be good and similar to recent years. Most of the bass will be 10" - 15", with good numbers up to 20", and an occasional larger bass. There is no size limit for black bass, and anglers are encouraged to harvest ALL bass less than or equal to 11 inches, up to the daily limit of six. This should allow the remaining bass to grow faster, resulting in a higher quality largemouth bass fishery. Anglers should target largemouth bass in the spring in shallow areas along rocky banks and in shallow water around structure in the summer. Bluegill fishing is fair, with many of the fish in the 6-8" range. Sunfish anglers can also expect to catch redear sunfish, warmouth, green sunfish, and longear sunfish. Channel catfish are common, especially along the dam. Flathead catfish are commonly caught on trotlines or jugs.
Annual Prospects Report
black bass good using crankbaits and spinnerbaits early and late in the day; bluegill fair using crickets and worms; channel catfish fair using live baits on jug lines and trotlines at night; crappie fair using minnows and jigs; all other species slow; anglers should note the 9" minimum length limit regulation for crappie on Wappapello Lake; recorded lake level and other information can be received by calling the Wappapello Lake Information Hotline at 573-222-8139 or 1-877-lake-info.